Thanks for giving

Published 6:35 pm Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Another holiday season is rolling its way right through our lives and already I feel the pressure. The kids are asking where are the Christmas decorations and I am still in Thanksgiving mode, trying to coordinate dinner entrees and side dishes with my father for the feast on Thursday.

Who is coming to dinner? Who isn’t? How many turkeys and how many green beans?

Somewhere among the pressure to do even more, I like that at least for the sake this column I can reevaluate my appreciation of life and all the blessings. So, let us smell those roses and mentally create a list of things to be thankful for this holiday season.

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Maybe I should just leave blank space and you fill in your own list.

Thankful. Are we? Are we really? Or do we sit around and count all the things we don’t have or things that are not good enough? Do we have narrow vision and explore only that which is surrounding ourselves or can we think enough of others and see what is lacking in our community? Do we care how many are hungry this season? How many need the necessities of life which is not a Playstation 3 or whatever the game dejur is this season?

Certainly, we are thankful for an extremely quiet hurricane season! This time last year, we had slim pickings on what we had to be grateful for. We had lost our materialistic minds and were actually in tune with what is important. But just as memory fades, we lose the edge of our hard knock. It is back to business as usual.

I am grateful. I feel very blessed and very appreciative. So “count your blessings” right along with me.

Let us be thankful we are not in the middle of a celeb divorce where everyone knows your dirt and can read it while waiting at the check-out.

Let us be thankful we are not in the middle of a fairy tale celeb wedding where even your underwear you bought for the special occasion is displayed before the world. Did I really need to see the silk boxers Mr. Cruise is going to wear?

Let us be thankful we are not the author of a fictional confession by a non-fictional alleged murderer….who just wanted to let us know how he would have done it if he had done it? Well, let me just say I allegedly read the book and end it at that.

Let me be thankful that I can not have any more children! Because they were wrong about Eight is Enough, believe me, four is enough.

Let us be thankful that gasoline is going down and houses are going up.

Let us be thankful for TiVo, Oprah and DSL!

Let us be thankful that our country has made it through some scary bumps this year, the rhetoric with Iran, North Korea and the Israel vs Hamas war. No matter where you stand on Iraq, let us be thankful that we have heroes abroad serving our country with their lives while we grumble that the turkey is dry and where is the cranberry sauce?

Let us remember and be thankful that we live in the greatest country in the world and although we are divided along political lines we can all agree to disagree, which separates us from the world. Grandma can vote one way and the grandson the other, but as a family we sit and eat and embrace that we are all different in our views, our choices and our politics as we pass the mashed potatoes. As long as we put love of each other above it all, appreciate our brothers and sisters, and respectfully treat each other then we have truly celebrated the spirit of the holiday.

Be thankful that at least in our times, we have enough food to be fat.

So start gaining your holiday weight, burn some of it off running around malls on Friday, and before making your “I want” Christmas list, try saying a special thank you for what you already have.

Thanks for reading my column and have a great Turkey Day!